Ebay & Craig Listings


Birchbark CanoeingBuilder
Now that we have several fellow members patrolling cyberspace for wooden canoes and posting in a variety of locations; how about a special section for those listings eh?:rolleyes:
How about just posting a link to those listings in the new "Canoe Photo Index" since that area isn't getting a lot of use at the moment? This would imply that there should be at least one photograph available. I am concerned that this forum has a lot of sections already and another one for links to other advertisements may invite even more annoying "buy my stuff" messages.

The policy has been that direct or first person advertisements are not permitted in the forums since there already is a classifieds section at http://classifieds.wcha.org/ with a fee for non-members. This has led to some difficult decisions for the webmasters about when to remove a message.

Feel free to reply here if you have a different suggestion or other strong feelings on this topic,

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Posting in Canoe Photo Index sounds reasonable to me, as canoes listed on eBay and elsewhere are sometimes UFOs or have an air of mystery about them that leads to an interesting discussion. Even an obvious Old Town may invite discovery of a serial number so a build record can be posted.

There may be concern that posting listings for interesting canoes on this website might jack the price up for someone who is biding his time, hoping nobody else will notice what he's discovered is up for sale. But it could work the other way too-- folks would be disinclined to bid simply to prevent a nice boat from selling for too little money, if they knew a WCHA member was planning to bid. This may be something we need to discuss, though, as Denis and I may not have won our most recent eBay canoe at the "buy it now" price, if the canoe had been posted here... but that's hard to say, as I jumped on it as soon as I saw it!

We maybe need to hear others' stories-- the pros and cons of people alerting the membership to an interesting canoe for sale as part of "what we do". I personally think that sharing sightings adds to the general camaraderie of this place, and I know that I learn from each canoe discussed here.


I like the idea of folks posting canoes for sale, as usually there isn't a lot of competition for them. The risk of increased prices and someone buying a canoe out from under another does exist.

Over on another site I visit, they have a VERY strict rule about NOT posting until the sale/auction is over. Violating the rule can get one removed from the board. In this case, there is ferocious competition for items and getting a good buy or better is much admired and sought after.

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I’ve been reluctant to weigh in because part of my response here raised some ire once before. So please, know that none of the comments posted here are directed in any way toward any individual or group of individuals. Whew…

I don’t think that having a forum for posting other peoples’ canoe ads is wise, nor do I think it’s wise to post them ad-hoc. There are a variety of reasons:

1. We have a classified ads section of the website specifically devoted to the sale of wooden canoes and similar boats. Supposedly, ads are free to members but have a cost to non-members. This policy should either generate new members or generate revenue for the WCHA. Forum posters who do the work for sellers (by posting their Ebay and Craigslist ads here) circumvents these benefits to the WCHA entirely.

2. There may be ethical and/or legal issues with posting the photos taken by other people. Maybe Greg can chime in on the legality here; I’m not sure about the legal side, but it seems unethical to take someone else’s photos and post them here forever. We could argue that “that’s just the breaks in the digital age”, but the free-flow of electrons doesn’t negate ethical behavior.

3. Posting Ebay and similar ads here could generate animosity among WCHA members as well as non-members who frequent this site (in fact, I’ve heard that it already does). Someone who does the legwork of finding a “for sale” listing may not appreciate someone with no interest displaying their find on this site. Note- whether you agree with this sentiment or not, there are people who feel this way. We can argue about the merits of such feelings, but they will crop up.

4. Some WCHA members abhor the cutting up of canoes for bookcases, or the selling of canoes solely as decorations to be hung in expensive homes. These are personal philosophy issues again, but they are real concerns to some of our membership. A WCHA forum for Ebay listings will provide one more avenue for people with "motives less pure than ours" to find and purchase wooden canoes, and will do much of the legwork for people who would turn some wonderful old canoes into bookcases. Wooden canoes are property and people can do what they want with their own property. Even so, does the membership want to potentially aid the destruction of wooden canoes, or rather remain "devoted to preserving, studying, building, restoring and using wood canoes" (now where have I heard that line before?)?

I just noticed that Dave McD posted an excellent (short!) argument that sums up #3 above. Thanks, Dave!

Please don’t think I’m taking a holier-than-thou attitude here. That’s not my intention. My opinion? These ads are on Ebay and Craigslist… I personally don’t need to see them duplicated here. Information from the ads is another thing. I’m submitting an article for Wooden Canoe just now that gleans information from “for sale” and auction listings, but it is about the data, not simply a list of advertisements.

My two cents... perhaps worth far less, but here it is anyway.

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There's the perspective of some who have posted these notices, who have indicated that they don't have an interest in a particular boat, but are willing to go look at a boat, for someone else who is interested. That adds a lot to the camaraderie of the organization.

Also, posting, or at least opening discussions, at this site might prevent somebody from making bookcases out of a Rushton, or a Willits, or Old Town SN 1001, or whatever other interesting/historical canoe might be getting dug out of a barn next week...
pros and cons

Sounds like there are some reasonable reasons either way.

My concern would be for the possibility of inadvertently assisting a criminal in cheating someone in a fraudulent scam.

I guess my vote would be with MSG and David McD, unless someone can let just me know of a restorable Rushton under 1500.
Make that 1200. :-]
or a Seliga
or a Horace Strong
There are conflicting interests & reasons, like so many things in life. Applying hard & fast rules only make it worse...

Could almost develop a set of guidelines, if someone has the spare time. :rolleyes:

1) If you want it, don't tell anyone.
2) If you don't want it, but know someone in particular who might, tell them.
3) If you and nobody you know might be interested, feel free to post.
4) If you see any reason to think there's fraud, broadcast it widely, along with your suspicions...

It gets out of hand in a hurry...
Your Benevolent Dictators held a corroboree earlier today on this subject, and at this time we see no reason to change anything. We've been fortunate on this board that civility has reigned throughout and (Evan notwithstanding - remember?) we've not had to do too much moderating. Thanks to all for that.

Both sides have eloquently stated their positions, and we are all smart enough to interpret those discussions and make our own stance. For the record, I fall into the camp of Dave McD and Michael G.

So, perhaps we can invoke the Pirate's Code (more what you'd call guidelines, thank you Jack Sparrow)...

* if you are interested in historical or identification aspects, but aren't buying, wait until the auction expires, then ask away

* if you need knowledge to pursue an opportunity, post away.

* rest assured, if someone is actively searching for an Old Town, they will probably find it without our help

* if it is a rare canoe, like a Rushton, you can be fairly certain that it will be found by those interested without our help

* ripping and posting photos from auctions or Craig's list without permission of the seller is Strongly Discouraged.
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Bravo, Bravo - I concur wholeheartily. There are plenty of mechanisms available like automatic notifications on e-bay or search tempest for CraigsList that the serious canoe buyer can use to find his or her own bargains and they can determine veracity of claims through more private channels.

Offers to look at a canoe for an interested, but distant WCHA member are great - I will gladly do it, as I'm sure most of us will. Once a member posts that he or she is interested in help and one of us responds, details by direct e-mail or Private Message will insure that the interested buyer does not start a bidding stampede!

Once again, thanks to Dan & Benson for their dedication to the forum and coolheaded direction.
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On and off the subject....sort of

Thanks Ferdy for stirring the pot! (call me...the crappies are hitting on Middle!)

Just kidding!

Seriously...., I have had these conversations with other members on both sides of the fence. It is a subject that needed debate openly on our forum and and the guiding hand of the Benevolent Webmasters.
We each have our own opinion and have reasons for those opinions. It may sound kinda selfish to some, I'm sure. I'll step out and say that I agree with the Pirate's Law as well as personal messaging or e-mailing information and conversations, as Cavy has suggested.

What I find is somewhat unfortunate, is that it is difficult to find where other members live to be able to check out canoes for each other as well as other parts of our love for canoes and paddling. So few members fill out the profile page. Is there something I should be afraid of something that I'm unaware of because I've filled my profile out?
Actually, Dave, it shouldn't be too much trouble to find someone. Just post something like... "Interested in a canoe advertised in the _____ area. Anybody willing to take a look and send some pictures?" If you add that you will pay in beer, I might even make the drive :rolleyes: